Archives for category: Training Skills

I will be away this Saturday and will leave the sessions in the box so whoever is first on the poolside please put them out in the lanes.  I know many of you will be away anyway doing the Great East Swim so for those of you doing the session I don’t want you to miss out of the fun of some faster swimming.  Therefore, the main set will be the Will Clarke set of fast and steady-paced 50s.

Remember, the secret to getting the most from this set is to focus on making all the fast 50s at a good pace, even when the turnarounds are short at the start of the set.  You can best achieve this by relaxing on the steady swims – focusing on good technique and easy speed with high stroke rate – and saving yourselves for good efforts on the fast 50s.

See you next week!

Rob

 

Photo courtesy of Will Clarke

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We have done a lot of intensity during the build-up and start to the race season so this week we are going to take a breath and slow down a bit.  The triathlon season is long and I think it is important to balance intensity with steadier-paced work.  Especially when many of us are getting good intensity training from races.

The main set will be a steady aerobic pyramid and we will have a technique subset beforehand to remind yourself about getting a good distance per stroke.  And to finish off we will do some 25 sprints for a bit of fun!  See you Saturday!

Rob

After the fast starting 200s last week I’d like to focus on finishing strongly this week.  Finishing strongly, or even putting in a burst to get into a better position mid-race, is a great skill to develop that is shown by many of the stronger swimmers.

Image result for jess learmonth

To help practise this we will be returning to the Jess Learmonth set from last year.  It is a set of 100s and 50s mixing swim and kick swum mainly at your 1500m race pace but with some fast 50s to finish.  The kick work is a good way of bringing on the fatigue for the end of the set ready for the fast 50s.  And doing some work on the legs is a good thing for providing a change of pace as your stroke rate will increase alongside a faster kick.

See you Saturday!

Rob

 

Having the ability to start fast is one of the ways triathlon swimming is different to pool swim racing.  You can get a significant advantage by getting yourself in a good position with a fast start, either by getting away from the washing machine of the mass start or by getting into a group where you can draft effectively.  This week we will be doing some positive split 200s to practise fast starts.

They are called positive split 200s to contrast them from negative split swims we normally do where we try and finish the second half of a swim slightly faster than the first half.  One of the tricks to making fast starts effective is having good awareness of those around you and putting in short bursts of speed to either get away from someone you don’t want on your feet or bridging a gap to a swimmer ahead.  Try and practise this awareness when you do the set this week by leaving 5s between swimmers (if possible in your lane) and practising catching the swimmer ahead.

See you Saturday!

Rob

Photo by Jon Del Rivero on Unsplash

 

 

I have a new challenge for you this week – inspired by Alex and Pete and also based on a set I did many years ago when swimming for Wycombe Masters.  It’s based on the Beep Test that you may have done in a gym to test your fitness.  A traditional Beep Test consists of short interval runs, with timed intervals getting ever shorter, with a beep telling you when to start the next interval.  You keep going until you can’t make the it to the start before the next beep.

In my swim variant of the Beep Test the objective is the same – try and make as many of the reducing turnaround times as possible until you can’t do any more.  We will start with 100s swum off a comfortable turnaround time.  Each subsequent 100 will be swum with 5s less rest.  Do as many 100s as you can until you can’t make the turnaround time any more.  Then drop back to doing 50s off the still reducing turnaround time.  These will feel comfortable again for a while until the turnaround times get tighter again and the challenge is to do as many 50s as you can make to the end of the set.  Please drop out when you can no longer make the turnaround times to ensure the lane stays together for the whole set.

Please swim this set off strict 5s intervals between swimmers if there are 8 or fewer swimmers per lane.  If there are more you will need to reduce the gap between swimmers to 3s but it will be easier to check your time and know whether or not you have made the turnaround time with 5s intervals.

See you Saturday!

Rob

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

Many of us will have an A-race, which is the race we aim to perform at our best during the season.  We may also have a B-race or another important qualification race.  You will often taper off the quantity and duration of your training before these races to perform at your best, so I expect many of you to either swim shorter sessions on Saturdays or swim them at much lower intensity.  However, most of us race much more than twice a year so should you taper before other races too if it’s not your A or B race?  Only you can judge what is right for you based on your race plan but I would encourage you to continue training hard before some races to help you judge the right taper for your A and B races.

This week we will be returning to the ratchet set we did a few weeks ago which is a 1,500m main set with the intervals swum at reducing rest intervals.  Enjoy trying to use the set to practise your easy-speed by relaxing and saving some effort for the last few reps where the turnaround times start to get really right.

See you Saturday!

Rob

 

Photo by Victoire Joncheray on Unsplash

Well done for all of your efforts on the Easter Swim last weekend.  It was a tough set – made especially tough by the unexpectedly warm water temperature – so well done for sticking with it.  This week we will be back to a more typical session but finishing a bit earlier to allow the juniors plenty of time for their time trials.

On the cards this week is a main set to help you focus on improving your VO2 max.  It consists of a number blocks of 100s, off a fairly short turnaround time, followed by a 100% effort, flat-out 50m sprint.  You will get more rest after the fast 50 as both the 100s and 50 will be off the same turnaround time.  Aim to swim the 100s at your sustainable 1500m race pace before putting in a maximum effort on the fast 50.

See you Saturday!

Rob

It’s time for the Easter Swim this week.  So we will be splitting the session into two equal 65 minute sessions – starting at 7am and 8:05am.

This will be a chance to put all of the hard work over the last few weeks to the test by seeing how all all our hard work on fast 50s and 100s translates into easy speed over a long endurance set.  The set will be a challenge and consist of a long set of 100s off a fairly short turnaround time.  Pace yourselves, relax and enjoy the challenge by focusing on good technique to achieve a good easy-speed.

See you Saturday!

Rob

Great effort last week on the fast 100s!  Those sorts of intense sets really let you practice expanding the envelope of your sustainable speed.  We will be expanding the envelope in a different way this week by returning to the Will Clarke set of fast and slow 50s.

Many of you will remember that this is a challenging set with fairly short recoveries at the start but getting longer at the end.  It is a great set for working on speed endurance.  To maximize the benefit of this set aim for a big difference in speed between your fast and slow 50s.  You should aim for a  minimum 5s differential of your times between the fast and slow 50s.  This will be a challenge on the earlier ones with a short turnaround time.  One the later 50s you should be able to get much more than a 5s differential on the faster and slower 50s.  How big a differential can you achieve this week?

See you Saturday!

Rob

It is important to expand the envelope of speeds you can swim at if you want to increase your speed.  The set of USRPT fast 50s is a good set for this where you are swimming at an unsustaitably fast pace so that you have to miss some out to keep your times.  This week we are going to do a set of 100s to work on expanding the envelope of your swim speed.  You will be getting much more rest than you usually do so please swim each 100 faster than your 400m race pace (aim for 5s per 100m faster.)  However, the aim is to swim every one at the same pace, though, so don’t go completely mad at the start!

See you Saturday,

Rob

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